The BIM Delivery Cube

Tim Cole, Executive Vice President, Research & Development at Causeway and Bill Healy, Chair of the BIM Technology Alliance explains how the BIM Delivery Cube will support industry adoption of BIM, and why it was developed…
To unlock the potential of BIM we need to consider the questions that BIM adopters will face and which, without clear answers, will add inertia or become progress blockers. Questions such as:
  • What do we need to do?
  • What tools do we need?
  • What skills do we need?
  • What are the benefits?
  • How much will it cost?
The challenge was to distil the answers to these questions into simple, clear and brief guidance and to present them in such a way as to provide different stakeholders at different stages in the process the insights they need.

BIM is sometimes referenced as being a process. However it is more helpful to expand the definition to embrace the key aspects upon which the benefits of BIM application depend. BIM is a technology enabled information process that is built on collaboration and early engagement. Take away any of these elements and, although you can still make progress, the value is greatly reduced. The BIM Delivery Cube (“Cube”) provides a matrix that links Stakeholders at all project stages with the aspects that need to be considered. This improves awareness; gives confidence to evolve; builds maturity; enhances collaboration and promotes adoption.

Debate stirring?
The Cube was developed to be an aid to understanding, and a mechanism to share understanding and learning as BIM adoption spreads. It is not intended to offer a single comprehensive reference but rather to be treated as an open and shared resource that helps the benefits of BIM to be more easily understood and realised. People across our industry can use the Cube to support both initial engagement and operational use. Information within the Cube should be validated against the information from practical experience and, where changes are required or sections need to be updated, those changes should be shared, reviewed and incorporated. This way, the Cube remains a relevant source of information that is continually subjected to peer review.

The Cube’s three axis are Stakeholders, Work Stage and Delivery Component. We have considered the guidance from the perspective of nine different Stakeholder groups (from Client to Asset / Facilities Manager), through the different Work Stages (from Preparation to in Use) and for five key BIM information aspects (Activities, Benefits, Tools, Costs and Education). The Cube has been built to allow customised views to be generated ranging from broad perspectives through to specific Stakeholder / Work Stage / Aspect information.

One of the most widely discussed aspects of BIM adoption relates to the cost for the different stakeholders at different stages in the project lifecycle. The Cube provides a guideline estimate, based on defined criteria and current experience. As experience grows these figures can be refined or adjusted to reflect industry averages.

It was a deliberate decision to restrict the amount of information that would be presented at each of the many data-points within the Cube. This is considered key to ensuring the Cube remains easy to use and provides clear guidance that is accessible to the widest possible audience.

In time, it may be appropriate to provide an expansion to deliver more information. However, there is a strong argument that the Cube should remain centred on providing a comprehensive summary of BIM.

The Cube not only provides insights that define the engagement plan for each individual stakeholder, but also provides the opportunity to understand the perspective of other stakeholders.

It is widely agreed that we need to support effective collaboration and early engagement if BIM is to deliver its full potential. The Cube can be used to foster this approach by providing a wider understanding of the roles and responsibilities of all stakeholders engaged in delivering successful project outcomes.

Presenting the Cube as a searchable information source has proved challenging. The data is readily available through the BIM Task Group website (www.bimtaskgroup.org) and is increasingly being used. We have developed a simple and highly accessible online version that can be queried in any set of two or three-dimensional slices. This version should increase the number of people using the Cube as well as the community value it delivers.

With the support of BIM users, the Cube will play a key role in building a BIM community that is both well informed and able to collaborate effectively.

The Cube can be accessed here 


Click here to use the BIM Delivery Cube


Instructions to use

  1. Select two or three options from the cube axis
  2. Select 'Search Results' and the results will appear below the cube
  3. To change your selected options, deselect the highlighted option and select your new option, click 'Search Results' to see the updated results

Please note that in order for the Cube to work, Javascript needs to be enabled.

To provide feedback on the cube, please email bimta@ciria.org.


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